This is a tribute to a cat unlike any other.
A week ago we sent one of our dear friends to the Rainbow Bridge. For those of you who knew him, Buster Brown was unique.
He came to live with us in 2008 as a scruffy adult intact male cat. The sparkling, loving personality he was known for was not present back then. Typical of male kitties, he had gotten into fights and had multiple wounds over his body. He also had the worst dental disease you could imagine and lost several teeth in the process to make him healthy. He was FIV positive and had an oronasal fistula (a hole connecting the roof of his mouth and his sinuses). His road to recovery was long and hard. At the end of it was the Buster that we came to know and love.
Buster was known for his courage and his sweet disposition. Maybe due to his former street life, he wasn’t phased by large barking dogs or other angry cats. He was often the calming presence when the day would get chaotic. He loved to give “wet” hugs, where he would put one paw on either side of your shoulder and try to nuzzle your face with his perpetually wet mouth (due to his lack of teeth and abnormality in his palate). Buster also got into mischief. He would creep up to the lower cages and stick his paw inside, stealing food if it was left too close to the bars. During staff meetings, he would go hide, not enjoying having his space invaded by the entire team, preferring to love one on one. It was considered especially good luck if he wandered into your exam room by mistake, which happened on occasion. He loved taking naps and being brushed out. He wore out his scratching posts and always looked forward to meal time. No one could look at him and not love him.
For each of us, Buster was something a little different. To me, he was that shining beacon of hope. That no matter what a pet’s history was or how bad off they seem, with a little love and TLC, they can live the life that they were meant to have. How many stray cats out there have Buster personalities hidden underneath the layers of fear. It gives me a renewed appreciation for anyone who rescues pets. He wasn’t with us for very long, but we were so happy to be able to give him the best years of his life.
Please take a moment to remember all of those pets out there who just need a little extra love and attention.